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Chapter 7.  Social stratification is the ranking of people or groups in accordance with their access to scarce resources.  Income…money that one has.

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Presentation on theme: "Chapter 7.  Social stratification is the ranking of people or groups in accordance with their access to scarce resources.  Income…money that one has."— Presentation transcript:

1 Chapter 7

2  Social stratification is the ranking of people or groups in accordance with their access to scarce resources.  Income…money that one has.  Wealth…resources and value one has.  Power…control that one has.  Prestige…recognition and respect one has.  Each layer of stratification is a social class.  Categories of people who hold similar resources and share values and lifestyles.

3  Open system - boundaries between hierarchies may be influenced by people’s achieved statuses.  US  Closed system - boundaries between hierarchies are rigid, people’s positions are set by ascribed status.  Caste System

4  A type of stratification based on the ownership and control of resources and on the type of work people do.  Social mobility…movement from one class to another.  Horizontal mobility occurs when people experience a gain or loss in position and/or income that does not produce a change in their place in the class structure.  Vertical mobility is movement up or down the class structure is.

5  Status is determined at birth based on parents’ ascribed characteristics.  Cultural values sustain caste systems and caste systems grow weaker as societies industrialize.  Vestiges of caste systems can remain for hundreds of years after they are “officially” abolished.

6  Extreme form of stratification where people are owned by others.  Throughout recorded history 5 societies have been slave societies:  Ancient Greece  Roman Empire  United States  Caribbean and Brazil.  There are an estimated 30 million people held as slaves worldwide.


8  Access to resources such as food, clothing, shelter, education, and health care.  Affluent people have better life chances because they have greater access to:  quality education  safe neighborhood  nutrition and health care  police protection

9  Marx believed that there would ultimately be two classes; the bourgeoisie (wealthy) and the proletariat (working class).  There is a large poverty problem in America.  Roughly 50 million Americans live in poverty.  Some of the richest in the world live in America.  Roughly 5 million millionaires and 260 billionaires.



12  50% of US income lies in 20% of the population  84 % of US wealth lies in 20% of the population  Under 4% of the wealth lies in the lowest 20%of the population  Open Class Structure of US  Upper Class  Upper Middle Class  Middle Class  Working Class  Working Poor  Underclass

13  Includes infamous 1%  Approximately 20% of total population  “Old Money”…Rockefellers, Vanderbilt's etc…  Rarely associate outside of class.  Can include lower upper class which is often a result of achieved status.  May be better off financially but have the prestige.

14  40%-50% of Americans  Upper middle class consists of 14% of the population.  Successful business people, politicians, professions etc…  Earn enough to live well and save money  Highly educated.  Middle, middle class is 30% of the population  Most of us  Mix of education

15  Also known as the lower middle class.  Truck drivers, machine operators, skilled labor  Below average income and unstable employment  Lack benefits  Mostly wage workers

16  13 % of the population  Minimum wage workers  Do not earn above the poverty threshold  Low skilled workers

17  12 % of the population  Unemployed  Lack education and skills  Often have disabilities


19  Absolute poverty…not enough to secure life’s necessities.  Relative poverty…comparing the bottom with other levels of income.  Poverty Threshold…a measure of income level at which people are considered poor.  49.7 million Americans live below the poverty threshold.  16%  Americans are experiencing downward mobility.

20  About 47% of the poor are white.  However, the poverty rate for whites is 7.5 %  The poverty rate for African Americans and Latinos is 23%.  African Americans and Latinos account for 25% of the population but make up 50% of the poor population.

21  Female head of households  Nearly half of poor households are headed by females.  On average, women earn about $.72 for every dollar earned by men.  Known as the feminization of poverty.  Children  Poverty rate for children under 6 is 22%...the highest for any age group in the US

22  Elderly  About 9% over 65 live in poverty  Due to a fixed income  Disabled  Make up 12% of the poor.


24 Education All Races White African American Hispanic No diploma21.815.734.826.7 High School Graduate 11.99.422.015.4 Some college8.57.011.510.6 College degree (or more)

25 AgeAllWhite African American Hispanic Under 1817.810.533.628.9 18–2418.114.528.122.6 25-4411.27.820.218.4 45-648.87.016.814.4 65 and above9.87.523.918.7


27  Global poverty is linked to the level of development in a nation.  Industrialization brings a higher standard of living.  Also believed that development increases life chances  However, development may breakdown traditional norms and values.

28  Modernization Theory…belief that modernization can lead to a higher standard of living, economic movement and sustainability.  Dependency Theory…belief that global poverty can be blamed somewhat by the exploitation of high income nations.  Poorer nations are reliant on wealthier nations and cannot break out of the cycle.

29  World Systems Theory…suggest that “core” nations dominate the world economy and other nations may move slightly depending on resource development.  Truly global system held together by economic ties.  New International Division of Labor Theory…suggests that with the age of globalization, highly industrialized societies are dependent on less developed societies for cheap labor.


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